Senga agrees to 5-year, $75M deal with Mets (source)

December 11th, 2022

Kodai Senga, one of the best pitchers in Nippon Professional Baseball, is exploring MLB free agency, and is tracking the latest rumors surrounding the right-hander.

Dec. 10: Senga agrees to 5-year, $75M deal with Mets (source)
Japanese right-hander Kodai Senga and the Mets agreed to terms on a five-year, $75 million deal Saturday, a source told The team has not confirmed the deal, which is still pending the completion of a physical. More >

Dec. 7: Senga has robust market
Senga has been connected to a long list of clubs this offseason, and his market remains strong in the wake of the Jacob deGrom (Rangers) and Justin Verlander (Mets) deals.

MLB Network insider Jon Heyman provided an update on Senga's market on Tuesday, naming the Mets, Giants, Red Sox, Cubs, Padres and Rangers as the teams pursuing the right-hander, though the Cubs (Jameson Taillon) and Rangers (Andrew Heaney) later struck deals with other free-agent hurlers.

The Mets reached a deal with José Quintana on Wednesday, but MLB Network insider Jon Heyman reports that they are still in on Senga.'s Jon Paul Morosi also mentioned the Angels, Blue Jays and Yankees as possible Senga suitors on Monday.

Senga's agent, Jeff Wolfe, said Tuesday that the 29-year-old, who is seeking a contract of at least five years, already has several such offers on the table. Also per Wolfe, Senga's top priority is choosing a team that "wants to win, right now", potentially giving the upper hand to the Blue Jays, Mets and Padres, among the clubs already tied to Senga.

With deGrom and Verlander off the market, Carlos Rodón is the clear-cut No. 1 starter still available, but he’s reportedly asking for six years and around $180 million. He’s also tied to Draft compensation after declining the Giants’ qualifying offer. It’s possible those factors will cause some of the suitors for Rodón to pivot to Senga.

Nov. 29: Could this club sign Senga to entice Judge?'s Jon Paul Morosi reported during Tuesday's edition of Hot Stove that the Giants are "heavily involved" in Senga's market. The appeal for San Francisco, per Morosi, could be two-fold:

First, Senga would cushion the possible loss of free-agent starter Carlos Rodón. Secondly, signing the Japanese right-hander could help entice the Giants' top offseason target -- Aaron Judge -- to choose them instead of going back to the Yankees or joining the rival Dodgers.

"[Judge] would be leaving a team that made it to the ALCS; the Giants missed the playoffs entirely. I think that for the Giants to sign Aaron Judge, that cannot be the culmination of their offseason moves, but rather the first big step," Morosi said. "That's where I think a Kodai Senga conversation would be really important [not] just for the roster, but also to help them complete the sales pitch to bring Aaron Judge back to California."

The Giants' interest in Senga is nothing new; they have basically been in on the right-hander since he filed for international free agency in October. The team even displayed Senga on the Oracle Park scoreboard earlier this month. But adding him won't be easy as the 29-year-old has drawn interest from the Yankees, Mets, Padres, Cubs and Red Sox, just to name a few of his possible suitors.

Nov. 28: Cubs reportedly monitoring Senga’s market
Add the Cubs to the long list of teams with interest in Senga. According to Patrick Mooney and Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic (subscription required), Chicago is monitoring a group of starting pitchers that includes Senga.

As noted in The Athletic’s report, Senga is represented by the same Wasserman agency that negotiated the Cubs’ free-agent deals with Japanese stars Yu Darvish (six years, $126 million) and Seiya Suzuki (five years, $85 million).

Marcus Stroman, Kyle Hendricks and Justin Steele are seemingly assured of rotation spots heading into 2023, but there’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding the other two spots. Senga could give the Cubs the ace they lack if he can make a smooth transition from NPB to MLB.

However, the Cubs have a lot of competition for Senga’s services. The right-hander has already met with the Mets, Giants, Padres and Rangers, and he’s received interest from the Yankees, Red Sox and Dodgers as well.

Nov. 22: 3 teams to watch in Senga sweepstakes
Exactly how many teams are in on Senga?'s Mark Feinsand said Tuesday that it "seems like a quarter of the league, if not more, has already been in touch."

Senga, who is heading into his age-30 season, has already met with a handful of teams. Sources told's Jon Paul Morosi that the Red Sox and Yankees have been in contact with Senga's representatives. He is a very popular name on the open market right now, and Feinsand said that there are three teams to watch in the Senga sweepstakes: the Giants, Rangers and Padres.

Senga has already met with those three teams, and Feinsand adds that the Giants "have a lot of interest among all these teams." The Rangers have also shown interest in Carlos Rodón and Jacob degrom and are seen across the league as the team "that's going to spend on pitching," per Feinsand. Senga has ties to Padres pitchers Nick Martinez and Robert Suarez, whom he played with in Japan. Senga is also friends with Yu Darvish.

Nov. 21: Will Yanks-Sox rivalry ignite over Senga?
The Yankees and Red Sox battle it out annually in the AL East, and they have gone head to head for some top free agents over the years, too. That just might be the case again this offseason, when it comes to Senga.

Both clubs have been in touch with the representatives for the 29-year-old, according to MLB Network's Jon Morosi. That's not too surprising, given that New York and Boston both could stand to bolster their rotation depth. And while transitioning to the Majors is not always seamless, Senga has been highly successful with Nippon Professional Baseball's Softbank Hawks, including a 1.94 ERA in 2022. Senga's impressive fastball velocity and nasty splitter certainly give Major League suitors plenty on which to dream.

Add in the fact that Senga is an unrestricted free agent who isn't attached to Draft pick compensation -- unlike fellow free agents such as Carlos Rodón or Nathan Eovaldi, who declined qualifying offers -- and Senga only becomes more marketable.

Of course, those same things will appeal to other teams besides the Yankees and Red Sox. Indeed, the Giants, Mets and Padres also have been connected to Senga, who is sure to garner widespread interest this winter.